Small plane experiences hard landing, flips on runway in Lakeland a day before Sun 'n Fun starts

Sun 'n Fun Int'l Fly-In & Expo runs 4/10-4/15

The Lakeland Police Department responded to an aircraft incident at Sun 'n Fun Int'l Fly-In & Expo a day before the opening of the big air show. 

Officials say a 2016 experimental amateur built aircraft experienced difficulty while trying to land at the Sun 'n Fun Air Show at approximately 6:24 p.m. on Monday. 

Sun 'n Fun Int'l Fly-In & Expo takes to the skies over Lakeland this week

The experimental airplane had a hard landing, causing the front wheel to collapse and the plane to flip forward on runway 8-26. The pilot was Steven Gerard Felix, a 54-year-old student pilot from Alexandria, Virginia. He was not injured. 

The runway was closed for approximately 30 minutes while emergency personnel responded to the scene. 

The plane was moved to a secured location and FAA personnel responded to the scene for a preliminary investigation. 

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